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Technology has improved the game of golf in many ways. But one of the most fun – and useful – innovations has been the rangefinder. These handy devices allow golfers to gauge the distance and elevation of a far-off target, perfect for measuring your distance from the green, how far you shot from the tee or how much power you need to use to clear that water hazard. Like any gadget, there are a variety of rangefinders to choose from. Do you want something with all the bells and whistles? One that’s good for extra-long distances, or made for hillier courses? Or do you just want something durable that won’t break the bank? Whether you’ve got a tight budget or no budget at all, read on to learn more about the best rangefinders for improving your golf game.
Best Overall: Bushnell Pro X2 Golf
The best golf rangefinder on the market is the Bushnell Pro X2 Golf. Created by one of the best brands in the industry, Bushnell’s compact and stylish gadget features a Class 1 laser and Dual Display technology, meaning users can check their range using either a black or red display to accommodate weather conditions. The Pro X2 ‘s PinSeeker function with JOLT technology will vibrate in the user’s hand when it locks on to a flag, taking any guesswork out of the accuracy of the reading. Measurements are laser precise, accurate up to 1.5 feet, and there is a slope-switch functionality to measure hills, mounds and everything in between. The Pro X2 is waterproof and protected by a metal casing, meaning this excellent rangefinder should last you for many, many rounds.
Best High-End: Leupold Gx-4ia2 Rangefinder
The Leupold Gx-4ia2 Rangefinder may be on the pricier side, but it packs in all the features an avid golfer could want, including a bright OLED display and Digital Enhancement Accuracy for faster measurements. This battery-powered device is stylish, totally weatherproof and has multi-coated lenses for improved clarity, plus a built-in pin hunter to help you spot the flag from far away. And it really means far away — the Gx-4iA2 has a range of over 700 yards, with astounding accuracy up to one-tenth of a yard. In that case, you really are getting what you pay for. And for tournament golfers, it’s worth noting that this rangefinder is permitted for use under USGA rules (after minimal modifications).
Best Budget: TecTecTec VPRO500 Golf Rangefinder
The TecTecTec VPRO500 Golf Rangefinder is an effective and very popular rangefinder that costs considerably less than its competitors. Using a laser to make its measurements, the VPRO500 has a 540-yard range with accuracy up to one yard, as well as a PinSensor function that can accurately measure overlapping objects. With both meter and yard displays available, the rangefinder also boasts ultra-clear, multi-layered lenses for easy reading. You sacrifice some of the higher-end functions such as speed measurement, but overall the TecTecTec rangefinder is tough, lightweight and a great budget option that does everything you need it to do. Amazon reviewers praise its easy functionality and fast readings, with many claiming it works just as well as more expensive devices.
Best Value: Gosky Golf Rangefinder
This rangefinder does a little bit of everything. In addition to the PinSensor and multi-lens features common to many rangefinders, the Gosky also has a flagpole lock feature, continuous-measurement mode and a function that allows you to measure speed. It has a range of 650 yards with accuracy of up to one yard, and its water resistance makes it suitable for hunting, birding and other sports in addition to golf. Considering these other uses, the Gosky’s competitive price makes it a great value. Multifunctional, compact and durable, the Gosky can go wherever you go.
Best for Hills: Bushnell Pro x7 Jolt Rangefinder with Slope
If your home course is hilly, a rangefinder with great slope detection is a must-have. The Bushnell Pro X7 Jolt Rangefinder with Slope has you covered. The hand-vibrating JOLT technology allows you to easily lock on to the pin, and the Slope technology calculates incline and decline instantly to give you a “true” distance reading over uneven terrain. With a mammoth range of five yards to one mile and accuracy within a half yard, the Pro X7 can handle a whole lot more than a hill. This Bushnell device also features 7x magnification, high definition optics, Extreme Precision Technology and a Class 1 laser. The Pro X7 Slope is expensive (in proportion to its sophisticated functionality), so you’ll want it to last. Fortunately, the whole thing is waterproof, has a two-year warranty and comes with its own case.
Best for Durability: TecTecTec VPRODLX Golf Rangefinder
This tough-as-nails rangefinder is moderately priced and made to last. With a 6x zoom, PinSensor technology, continuous scan mode and a range from five to 600 yards, you know this gadget will do its job regardless of the weather. It’s also waterproof and comes in a shock-resistant case, so you never have to worry about damage if there’s inclement weather or if it gets tossed around in your golf bag. It’s also a favorite of Amazon reviewers, who say it’s easy to use and holds up against much more expensive brands. The VPRODLX rangefinder is also tournament legal.
Best for Gifting: Precision Pro Golf NX7
While any rangefinder can be a gift, the Precision Pro Golf NX7 strikes a good balance between quality and affordability. This device uses pulse vibration to indicate when it has locked onto a target, has clear optics for easy readings, and Adaptive Slope Technology for accurate measurements. Its 400-yard range is accurate to the yard, with 6x magnification and Target Acquisition Technology. The lime green casing makes it easy to find in a golf bag, and the blend of style and function makes this rangefinder a great gift for golf-lovers that he or she will actually use. And you can rest assured that you’re giving something that will last – this device also comes with a two-year warranty, trade-in insurance and battery replacement services.